On Star Trek Discovery, and all things new



Warning! Danger, Will Robinson!
Here be SPOILERS for Star Trek Discovery up to series 1 episode 5!


At time of writing, we’re up to episode 5. I have to say, it’s living up to the hype - that it’s going places no other Trek show has been.

How? Two things:

First of all, it’s not following a ship (or a station) - it’s following a character. Just as the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy trilogy (of five) tells the story of a book by showing you its adventures as they concern humans, Star Trek Discovery is telling us the story of Michael Burnham as she causes conflict by interacting with ships, their captains, and their enemies.

Two: it doesn’t say ‘here are your bridge crew characters - now make stories about them’. It says ‘here’s a story and we’ll involve people are we need them’. For this reason, there’s no ‘episode as a vehicle for this character’ - apart from Michael, who, lest we forget, is who it’s all about.

I’m happy with these choices. I’m ecstatic that it’s breaking from tradition and going forward. When I first heard that CBS/Paramount were determined to keep going backwards in terms of the year it was set, I was pretty pissed off, to be honest. Star Trek is about moving forward, and that means you don’t write yourself into the past, a past before Kirk joins Starfleet, and box yourself in with what you can and can’t have because Kirk didn’t have it.

(As an aside - who else is waiting for the literal mirror-verse version of Stamets to bring about the end of spore-drive tech? When it’s discovered that it causes what I think is replication of the human spore-host as a mirror-version, Starfleet will have to abandon it - hence why Kirk doesn't have it. I’m so excited for this!)

However, this show has already been more progressive than its predecessors, and I’m happy about that. I’m also happy that these humans we have on this show are not the fully-formed, fully-balanced people of the 22nd or 23rd century. They’re in 2256 - 2 years before the events of the ‘The Cage’ - 11 years before Kirk takes command of the Enterprise. People are still humans - rough around the edges, living through a war with the klingons - a race they hardly know as they haven’t had to deal with for the past hundred years (since the time of Enterprise - around the 2120s). This is two hundred years before DS9's controversial episode ‘In The Pale Moonlight’ - and it shows. It’s commonplace for these people to do things they never would have considered had the situation not been one of dire need and absolute life or death. It’s people having to get on with it, without the benefit of a well-known and respected Federation behind them. The idea that the klingons think they know what will happen to them, their culture, their way of life - because they’ve seen other races ‘fall’ to the ‘assimilation’ of the Federation - feels very real and very current. Every generation gets the Star Trek they deserve - and we have one about identity, about preserving your own culture at any cost, about standing up and saying ‘nope - you can’t whitewash/airbrush me - this is who I am, deal with it - we exist and you can’t deny us’. That makes the klingons on the side of the current anti-Trump and anti-status quo section of our world population - they are sticking it to The Man, and that makes me happy. Of course, that makes Starfleet either The Man or very misunderstood. And I'm ok with that - it’s about the possibility of sides, after all. Picard would have looked at it both ways - Sisko would have asked Dax and she would have said she’s lived both ways. Kirk would have said it’s a risk to jump either way - but ‘risk is our business’ and to carefully decide if a side should even be chosen.

Basically, this is pure Star Trek that no-one wanted but everyone cried out for. Something new, something a little daring, something to challenge. And if Star Trek isn’t challenging people, it’s not doing it right.

This is not your mother’s sci-fi. This is born of new ways of telling stories, of modern TV styles, and new ways of engaging (pardon the bad link) with its audience. The Expanse, Killjoys, Dark Matter - they’ve all pushed the envelope - and personally I don’t think Star Trek will ever be as shamelessly celebratory of diversity as Killjoys. But that’s not the only reason for Star Trek - it’s also about discovery. Though it’s hard to do that going back in time, it is easy to do if you’re thinking in terms of exploring the human condition and how it changes under stress, under the threat of death for many millions of souls - because of something you decide at that moment. What makes you, you? What makes you act in defence of or against someone else? That’s what they’re exploring here, and that’s what I’m looking forward to seeing more of.

Lorca may have scuttled his own ship (the Buron) and taken all hands but himself with her, but he did it because the needs of those many crew members outweighed the needs of the one. People are railing about how he has no soul, but didn’t he do exactly what Vasquez and Gorman did in Aliens when surrounded by xenomorphs and no ammo? Didn’t Picard do the same to a crew member lying on the floor asking for his help in Star Trek: First Contact? Ask Miles O’Brien if he’d leave someone alive to be taken prisoner by the Cardassians. And as for leaving Mudd behind - he had already proven himself to be a spy and someone only able to look out for himself. And he did brag about being a survivor. To be honest, I would have left him too.

On that subject, it’s obvious Tyler is a spy for the klingons (he escaped physical harm for how long? And his klingon captor was taken down much too easily for anyone to believe) but that’s why Lorca’s taken him along, isn’t it? He probably smelt it a mile off and is going to try to play him at his own game. After all, if he has a spy on board sending messages to the enemy, all you do is follow the message.

Time will tell if any of my musings are correct, but then that’s the fun. For the first time since DS9, there’s Star Trek on telly. I wasn’t in the UK for Enterprise, but compared to DS9 and Discovery it was weak. The characters were wasted and some of the stories were recycled from DS9 anyway (the Enterprise episode ‘Oasis’ and the DS9 episode 'Shadowplay', anyone?).

For me personally, I’ve seen more Star Trek in the first five episodes of Discovery than a whole season of Enterprise. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not hating on Enterprise and we needed it to keep the TV versions of Star Trek ticking along. But it was all starting to get a little stale, and this new idea of following a person and not a ship is what I think Star Trek needed to keep up to date - so far in the past that’s still yet to come.

Your mileage may vary - but for me, it’s yipping along with all the right signs. Long may it continue.

Going to the Pictures (IV)


I’ve been lagging behind in my movie-watching. Not the watching bit, but the keeping-it-straight-in-my-head by making-a-note-of-it bit. So here we go:


The Big Sick (Unlimited Screening, 24th July 2017)

Pretty funny in places, semi-autobiographical in others, this was an eye-opener that was a nice change from the usual Hollywood output. Kumail Nanjiani is excellent playing pretty much parts of his own real life here. Add in Holly Hunter and Zenobia Shroff and you have some very strong scenes that resonate with anyone trying to reconcile either parents and/or lifestyles. A Sunday afternoon kind of movie, but a good one.

Verdict: 7.5/10

Captain Underpants (27th July 2017)

I’ve read and re-read so many of these books, mostly to students of English as a foreign language. However, as I’m reading I’m enjoying the fact that the books are about kids, for kids, not what adults think kids should like. Friendship, escapades, getting away with sticking it to the man adult - it’s all in there. The movie was a faithful and definitely very fun adaptation that had me giggling for the entire 80 minutes. The end theme song, written by Weird Al Yankovic, did it justice too. All in all, a fab day out for all the family. And I’m not even sorry.

Verdict: 9/10

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2nd August 2017)

I was so excited for this - I love The Fifth Element and finding out that Luc Besson had been developing this for a while to exist in the same universe, I couldn’t wait to see it. A shame, then, that the best part of the movie was literally the first 15 minutes as they show you how Earth came to be part of the thousand planets of the title. Clive Owen and Rihanna were awesome - you can’t go wrong with those two. However, the two leads left me cold and I felt no chemistry between them or in fact them and anyone else. I just didn’t care about them at all, and felt the movie meandered all over the shop. I left thinking it had been a waste, apart from Clive Owen’s ee-vil general and of course Rihanna’s pleasure model.

Verdict: 6/10

Atomic Blonde (10th August 2017)

Fun, a little dirty, a little messy, and best of all, a little ambiguous. There seems to be no limit to what Charlize Theron can pull off, and I enjoyed pretty much all of this. The only let-down was finding out who the ‘villain’ actually was at the end - I was looking forward to a further double-cross and certain characters walking away with everything, but Hollywood again saw fit to keep things within certain boxes. Hmmf. For that, and the fact that there was not a single Debbie Harry / Blondie track in the whole film, I’ve given it a lower mark than the rest of the film deserves.

Verdict: 8.5/10

The Hitman’s Bodyguard (19th August 2017)

Hilarious and fast-moving - this film felt about 45 minutes long. Wall-to-wall solid scenes and one-liners, this made me laugh out loud several times. Salma Hayek is perfect and on-form - worth watching just for her, but then there’s Ryan Reynolds being Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L Jackson being Samuel L Jackson. I liked that it was shot 90% in Europe, and that when shit was going down, Ryan Reynold’s character took the proper, logical option, and not the Hollywood option that Samuel L Jackson’s character wanted. Ace. Oh - and watch out for the bloopers on the end credits.

Verdict: 9.5/10

The Dark Tower (24th August 2017)

A good film, with solid leads and people you rooted for. However, it all felt like there was no question about who would win in the end, and the winning of that was too easy by a long chalk. Strange, but there it is. And no disrespect to any writer, producer, or director - but again it was all about men having men times with more men doing men things. Why the original couldn’t have been written about a woman, her mother, and a young girl, I don’t know. Oh wait, yes I do.

Verdict: 8.5/10

American Made (31st August 2017)

Sheer fun and frolics for 80% of the film, until it starts to sink in that you know how it all has to end. Tom Cruise is very good as Tom Cruise based on a real-life story not about Tom Cruise, and everyone else in it is very convincing. Funny, moving - a cautionary tale, indeed.

Verdict: 8.5/10

The Limehouse Golem (7th September 2017)

A tale of a sequential killer in London; a tarnished detective moved in to be the department scapegoat when he hopefully fails to find the culprit, the backdrop of the shady side of showtunes and bawdy theatre of Victorian London - characters you don’t expect, twists you think you see coming and then realise you’ve been set up - a lot to appreciate here. An excellent movie, it was a just a shame that more people weren’t even aware it was out. You’d think names like Bill Nighy, Douglas Booth, Eddie Marsan and Olivia Cooke would make them advertise it better.

Verdict: 9/10

American Assassin (Unlimited Screening, 12th September 2017)

Wow. I will admit, I was lured into this with the promise of Taylor Kitsch, and he didn’t disappoint. However, the film as a whole most certainly did. It was the most TEAM AMERICA - FUCK YEAH! film since Team America. Moments of definite cheesiness and painful attempts to justify black ops in defence of ’Murica, we stuck it out only because Michael Keaton deserves better. Feel a little sorry for the little Teen Wolf / Maze Runner dude, Dylan O’Brien, but when you’re getting your feet on the ladder you can’t be too choosy about which rungs they are, I guess.

Verdict: 5/10

Kingsman 2: The Golden Circle (21st September 2017)

What can I say? Critics have given it bad reviews, but I don’t care for other people’s opinions before I’ve seen a movie for myself, so I went anyway. Like anything was going to stop me from seeing a Kingsman movie. Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed it - fun, well-paced, well-acted (and it looked like people were having fun filming it), and just as much hilarity as the first one. While I knew it was going to hard to beat my top two moments of the first one (the Freebird in the church scene, and people’s heads exploding to the tune of Last Night of the Proms), there were plenty of moments in this new one that had me either laughing out loud or chuckling loud enough to drown out other cinema-goers’ laughter. Note: Chilean Burt Reynolds (otherwise known as a face morph of Jeremy Renner and Burt Reynolds from Smokey and the Bandit) is actually Pedro Pascal. There; you're welcome. It’s safe to say there are moments of that film that will live with me the next 10 years, and every time I think of them I will giggle. What more can you ask of a film?

Verdict: 9.5/10

Young Frankenstein (Special Anniversary Screening, 27th September 2017)

A blast from the past - and still just as much fun. How can you go wrong with a Mel Brooks / Gene Wilder film? The jokes were all still there, the spirit of the piss-take was strong with this one, and a good time was had by all.

Verdict: 8.5/10

Blade Runner: Final Cut (1982) (Special Screening, 28th September 2017)

A reminder before we see the sequel next week, the fact that this was Ridley Scott’s own favourite version he put together a few years ago was a pleasant surprise. There are more versions of this film knocking about than the Bible, so being able to watch what Scott considers the best version was a relief. It still had it (but luckily, did not have the voice-over or 90% of the dream sequence), and the restoration of the night scenes, the overshots of the rainy city, and the Vangelis theme were just incredible. Worth watching just for the cleaned-up cinematography alone, this version made things more stream-lined and, thankfully, shorter. Although I still want to know how Edward James Olmos’ characters knew to make a unicorn out of a gum wrapper and leave it at Deckard’s door.

Verdict: 9.5/10

That’s it for now - all up to date for the time being. As always, there will be more to come.

Soopytwist.

Labels


We’ve often been told that labels, in the context of putting people in boxes, is bad. Mostly true. As in, when we then use those labels to profile or segregate people. But labels in general? What did they do wrong? Isn’t it more the people hearing those labels, and the reactions they have to them, that are the problem?

For example, I say “the employment contract you signed says ‘don’t do the thing’ and you did the thing; why would you not expect consequences?” at work and I’m called ‘harsh’, ‘rude’, ‘not how the department should react’. I’m not at all bothered by what people think of me; what I’m more angered by is the fact that this person will get away with their actions because they put on some false anger and do the Storming Off In Indignation routine. And now it’s put down to ‘you handled it wrong’. When I ask how, I’m told ‘you should have been more tactful’. No, I say calmly, the person should not have tried to do the opposite of what he agreed to when he signed the contract. End of: level 1 disciplinary offence, case closed, move on. I’m told ‘it doesn’t work like that’, and now he’s ‘upset’.

*sigh*

Like I give an unidentified flying fuck how he feels; he broke a contract. Deal with him, get this done, move onto the next problem. This is why our department spends all our time in lengthy, drawn-out debates that take weeks to settle. That particular problem could have been solved in 10 minutes in a private meeting between Arsehole, his manager, and someone from our department. But no. Apparently ‘our way’ is dragging everything out.

Which brings me back to labels.

Arsing about on Tinternet this week has caused me, not for the first time, to stumble over the Myers Briggs personality test (or MBTI). In a rare case of ‘is it actually me and not everyone else after all?’, I took the test.

Basically it sorts everyone into 16 personality types (or labels). This in turn gives you insight into what inner forces drive you to act and speak as you do. I’ve done a few simple traits tests and associated tests before (including MENSA), but this one blew me away in terms of how accurate it was.

My label was INTJ. Or, in terms we can all understand, someone who is introverted, intuitive, thinks and judges. (Not in a judgey way, but in a weighing-up way.)

I’ve read a few different sources on what an INTJ is supposed to be like, and to be honest it’s scarily accurate. It also explains why there is so much frustration at work and on social platforms, and especially in areas that matter like who’s running a country and why nothing’s been done about it. For work purposes, it exposes a massive issue that has always been bubbling under the surface for me, but I never knew it was A Thing and therefore needed to be sorted. Now it’s been waved in my face, in apparently true INTJ style, I can work out what to do about it and then just do it.

It also explains why I get so pissed off when colleagues say things like ‘you shouldn’t say that out loud’ or ‘you need to be more professional’. I AM THE MOST PROFESSIONAL PERSON IN MY DEPARTMENT, UNCLEFUCKER. When was the last time I checked my phone during work hours? When was the last time I showed any emotion at all to someone asking stupid questions? When was the last time I held a grudge against someone because of their behaviour or general stupidity? When was the last time I gossiped? When was the last time I had anything on my web browser that wasn’t work-related? When was the last time I wore something inappropriate? When was the last time I was late, or fucked off early, or didn’t deliver my objectives, goals, or projects? When was the last time I didn’t do a handover, or communicate my research findings, or prepare for the latest oncoming storm?

I see these things going on around me all the time, and it staggers me. However, I keep a lid on it - because apparently calling people out on their lack of professionalism is frowned on - yeah, let the irony of that sink in for a moment. I channel my inner Spock - or rather, my inner T’Pol, seeing as she was completely alien and trapped on a ship full of either idiots, incompetents, or people of less insight and ability to think things through, or of much less life experience. I get shit done and I tune out everything that annoys me. And for this I’m called ‘unprofessional’ because THE ONE TIME I don’t manage to do this and say ‘FFS’ under my breath, my colleague hears it and assumes I’m thinking of resigning.

Yes, resigning. For some reason, she believes I am unhappy in my job. She believes that after one bad day you want to leave. I don’t understand - I genuinely don’t. Whether you enjoy the job or not, you still get paid to do that fucking job, and moaning about how much you don’t like it isn’t helping. Do the job or don’t - but don’t pretend that you didn’t know it was going to be like this when you accepted the offer of employment. I knew exactly what I was getting into when I joined the company, and I still know exactly what the place is, perhaps more so than others. The idea that I would want to leave because of one bad hour (not even an afternoon or day) is to me extremely immature. It also tells me that for some reason, she thinks I’m not enjoying my job. I asked her outright: Does my face tell people I hate them or something? Do I seriously have a Resting Fuck Off Face? She said that my face changes when I speak to people, from FUCK OFF into OH HI HOW CAN I MAKE YOUR LIFE BETTER?, but she worried what others thought when they saw my concentrating face.

*sigh*

Like I give a shit what someone thinks of an expression on my face WHEN I’M BUSY WORKING. What in the actual fuck? What is this, the Face Police? Can’t they all just get on with their work and stop gazing round the room and FINDING things to worry about? I’m pretty sure that’s not in their job description and - you know what I'm going to say next, right? It’s not PROFESSIONAL.

But anyway. Being an INTJ is apparently not an easy life, but now I’ve read things about how non-INTJs react to INTJs basically INTJing all over their workplace, I can see more of her side than before. The problem is the very basis of being INTJ is not really caring about people’s opinions toward you because it’s not quantifiable evidence that anything is ‘wrong’, and anyway, what’s ‘wrong’ with ‘wrong’? How many people in history have been ‘wrong’ at the time, but then later proven right? And not just in terms of facts (Galileo for example) but attitudes themselves (Star Trek, David Bowie, etc.).

It’s tiring being an INTJ, I’m not going to lie. It’s exhausting tuning out all the inane shit that people ‘small talk’ about, exhausting having to adhere to long drawn-out processes when you can see the logical ending and just want to skip to it. It’s tough to keep my mouth shut when I just want to say ‘can you not?’ to people trying to stop me from working through trying to be sociable or generally distracting. I don’t get nearly enough recognition for the number of times I stop myself from saying, calmly and quietly, ‘fuck off’.

I think that’s this week’s rant mostly out of my system. I’m sure there’ll be more, but now I know the root cause, I can make adjustments. And they won’t include spades or plastic sheeting.

Soopytwist.

Secrets and Lies



I’m baaack! And I bring more writings! Ladies, gentlemen, boths and neithers, I give you:


Title: Secrets and Lies

Rated T/Teen & Up for some naughty language, some violence and conduct unbecoming, snakes, and divine retribution.

Summary:
Lucifer has left LA for some Me Time in sunny Atlanta. Who should he bump into but John Constantine, just minding his own business tracking down a magical weapon of devastating power. With Lucifer now helping him, how wrong could it go? Set after Constantine S01, and Lucifer S02E13. No spoilers for anything after, as I haven’t seen that far yet! Case fic.

Disclaimer: 
I do not own Lucifer or Constantine the shows in any of its forms or any of the characters. This is all for fun, not for profit. Unless you add me to any favourites lists or leave reviews/comments.

Linky-link-link: HERE at An Archive of Our Own under my name TozaBoma (because they don’t re-edit your stuff later) and HERE at Fanfiction dot net under my name Mardy Lass.

If you even visit the page, I thank you.



It’s not you, it’s me


I don’t normally talk about work here, mostly because that’s between me and work colleagues. However, it’s now come to the point where I need to speculate out loud. And because my landlord/housemate downstairs is watching The Princess Bride, I guess I’ll be smiling while I do it.

I'm very comfortable where I am. And by that I mean I go to work, do 8 hours, then go home again. They even let me change my hours to make the day start and finish earlier. Doesn’t help much with the traffic, but it does help with my overall day. I’m free to get on with projects and things I think need doing to keep the day-to-day running of software and background stuff working and all in order. Things like system maintenance, organising upgrades, staying compliant, and also being the only person in the business who can run and deliver payroll to all employees of two companies - I do all this. I know that in the grand scheme of things, I’m just a Corporal Hicks (no offence, Corporal Hicks). I know that I’m not in the team of people who have to make things happen or guide the direction of the company, and I know I’m not important or in fact key to the business. I know all these things, and I thought I was ok with it.


Maybe I’m not. Maybe that’s why I unconsciously ‘push back’ as they call it when people ask my opinion on stuff that I believe is beyond my pay grade. I think this is what it comes down to.

Do you (a) help even though you know it’s not your place, and you don’t have access or knowledge because you’re not in the management team, so everything you say is stuff that they’re asking you to do even though it’s not your job and is way above you so they’re getting it for free, or (b) push back and say it’s not your place to say? If you do ‘a’, maybe you’re proving that you can handle the next pay grade so they can look at promoting or including you more - so if you do ‘b’ then you’re shooting yourself in the foot. But when you know there’s nowhere to go - there’s no position above you, no reason to invent one, and no promotion in sight, then why not do ‘b’?

A long time ago, I was the kind of person who would say that my job description has clear definitions, and I stay inside of those definitions. It wasn’t out of spite, or pay issues, or anything but doing what it says on the tin. If you want me to do more, then write it on the tin. Everyone knows where they stand, people know who to ask to do various tasks because they can look on the tins for guidance, and everyone’s happy.

Then I went through a long phase of ‘well if they ask for my help then I’ll help’ - because we’re all just people, and knowing why someone comes to you instead of picking up the other tin can make all the difference.

Now I’m passing that phase. Now I’m getting to the bitter, twisted phase of ‘why should I?’. Not because of a lack of money or power for me, but more a case of why do I always have to sort this out? It’s not even my fucking job and yet you always ask me to fix this or sort that, as if I get paid for this’. Lest we forget, the more time I’m doing other stuff not in my JD, the less time I have to do what I’m actually paid to do. It’s just math.

So I’m doing ‘b’ more than ‘a’. Will that hurt my chances of promotion? No, because there isn’t anywhere to go. Will that affect my chances of a pay rise? No, surprisingly - I do my JD and the general consensus is that I do it well, with no reason to give me less than 5 out of 5.

It looks like I have an answer, then. Except when I do push back, I get a certain look from my colleagues - you know the look. It’s the look that says ‘you’re not being helpful’. It’s the look that says ‘but I asked you to do it and you always do - why aren’t you doing it now?’. I don’t actually care too much. What is beginning to grate is the maturity of some of the people around me.

A few months ago, I would have said ‘maturity’ as in the stupid, me-me-me questions some people ask me about payroll because they’re actual 5 year olds and think the world revolves around them. Yes, we have a few of those. But in the next 6 - 12 months they’ll find that attitude untenable in the new work environment the CEO is bringing in, and they’ll either be gone or put right, so I don’t waste time thinking about them.

What I care about is the way someone who’s supposed to be my equal, and someone else who’s supposed to be my line manager, come across as immature. And I don’t mean they’re self-centred or selfish or childish or anything negative at all. They’re nice people, they’re normal people, they’re fine. We get on and have a laugh, or agree on why people are being dicks, etc. They really are ok.

What I'm talking about is their attitude to life in general. I don’t care if they go on about shoes they’ve bought or how much they hate their hair today or which ‘pretty’ shirt they pulled out of the wardrobe this morning. I can tune all that inane conversation out very easily. I don’t care about them talking about their boyfriends and what they did last night and what they said and how it was soooo funny because men don’t understand anything and it’s cute and they love them for it. As I said, inane shit = sorted.

It’s the lack of maturity as in lack of experience. They say they’re ‘stressed’ because they have to confront someone, or do something outside of their comfort zone, or think they have a lot to think about.

And it irritates me, I won’t lie. ‘Stress’ is knowing the mortgage or rent is due next week, and even after you’ve done everything you possibly can, you still can’t make it - and you haven’t even eaten yet. ‘Stress’ is looking at your long-term plan for life and knowing it’s all going to go wrong because of the government changing some loophole, or your lack of funds which you can’t do anything about. ‘Stress’ is not having a way to get to work due to money or a bad situation. It is not having a lot to do at work.

I think that’s it - I think I’ve hit the nail on the head: having to work with people less than two-thirds my age, who have very limited life experience and no capacity to think of the bigger picture. I know I’ve been more withdrawn at work lately - talking more to my unofficial other line manager - the one from another department, which my JD kind of makes me keep one foot in. He’s the same age as me, he doesn’t want to talk about shoes, he’s married to someone from another world (perspective speaking). He’s lived and worked overseas for a substantial amount of time, he’s got a small child and juggles that and a job that routinely has more work to do than time to do it. He has perspective and understands the difference between stress and just another day.

Since moving from abroad back to England, I’ve come up against a lot of limited people. Limited in their understanding, limited in their perspective, limited in their willingness to look beyond their own nose. It’s just taken me the last 12 months to realise that working under one of these people, with no idea of why I’m irritated most of the time, is starting to grate.

This is why when I write now it’s straight to the point; the ruthless, logical people survive and the fluffy ones are cannon fodder (gleefully so). Films like John Wick (1 and 2) appeal to me more than others, these days. I’m getting tired of everyone else’s slowness and fluffiness. I’m pretty sure that’s a sign of getting bitter and twisted, with the world in general, not people.

But then I see Star Trek Beyond for the seventh time I’m willing to try, to be a ‘normal’ person and give people a chance, to put up with annoying whiners and get on with it. It sticks for a few weeks. Then I need something else to give me a reason not to get angry with these limited people.

And the next Star Trek film is at least a year away.

I’ve been looking up working overseas again. And again it comes down to not having the right qualifications or certificates to enable a work visa - that old chestnut. It seems lack of university will again be my undoing. This world’s reliance on an out-dated and falsely-regarded education standard is still my nemesis.

And that’s where we leave it, friends. No degrees, no money to get degrees, and therefore no change in sight. Lovely. Just what I need to realise on a dreary Saturday afternoon.